Archives for posts with tag: trace untrace

Finally, an end to 31 Days of May Madness for New Zealand Music Month, posting a New Zealand music track a day throughout May. Ending the way we began, with an appropriately-titled song from Dunedin post-noise-rock (or maybe we could call it Dun-gaze) newcomers Bathysphere called “See Ya”:

Bathysphere released their first album just as May started. That’s wonderful news because their first song “Window” and then this song – which is from the recent Dunedin compilation “…And It Could Be Right Now – New Music From Ōtepoti​/​Dunedin” – were the kind of thing there ought to be more of in the world.

Bathysphere is made up of a who’s-who of the Dunedin music underground, including Trace / Untrace Records founders Julie Dunn (Asta Rangu, Mary Berry) and Richard Ley-Hamilton (Asta Rangu, Space Bats, Attack!, Males), with Josh Nicholls (Koizilla, Space Bats, Attack!, Asta Rangu, Fazed on a Pony) and Peter McCall (Fazed on a Pony).

Asta Rangu guitarist/ vocalist/ songwriter Richard Ley-Hamilton has taken the crafted guitar-pop of his previous band Males, and twisted it to darker, more intricate and thrilling shapes and shades, injecting subtle layers of noise and mayhem, but retaining the pure heart of golden pop, as “Thin Air” here shows…

“Thin Air” is the closing track of Asta Rangu’s “Plasticine” EP (or, at 24 minutes, is it a mini-album?). It’s a hybrid of elements of shoegaze, atmospheric noise-rock, and jangling guitar pop, all laced with an intriguing undercurrent of Fripp-ish guitar sonics experimentation.

“Plasticine” was originally released in 2017 on cassette tape format by emerging Dunedin label trace / untrace who say: “melodic and angular, asta rangu laces jarring riffs into fidgety pop and hook-laden wordplay. a sonic trip into the noisy, intricately layered world of imaginary figures.

Now “Plasticine” has another physical format re-release on the unfairly maligned/ side-lined Compact Disc format, a more economically viable, sustainable, utilitarian, easy-to-store-and-mail, and, well, compact physical format than vinyl. CDs have the advantage of having the tactile and visual qualities of an LP record sleeve in miniature, and this one has a sleeve which has been lovingly hand-crafted in Dunedin by a team of trace – untrace records artisans.

The CD release is available in NZ record stores, and at any shows they play (like tonight’s show at Dive in Dunedin supporting The Beths)